UCEETS – The National Coordination Unit of Health Technology Assessment and Implementation
Buenos Aires, Argentina
– Guillermo Williams, Director, UCEETS
History and structure
Health Technology Assessment (HTA) is a key tool to guide rational decision making and improve equity in access to essential technologies. Given the importance of this process, several national bodies had began developing activities related to Health Technology Assessment in the public sector within the Ministry of Health. In 2009 The National Coordination Unit of Health Technology Assessment and Implementation (UCEETS) was born by Ministerial Resolution 458/2009, in order to coordinate these initiatives and produce the most efficient, highest quality of scientific information on the effectiveness, costs, and overall impact of health technologies. UCEETS is chaired by the Secretary of Policy, Regulation and Institutions and coordinated by the Health Regulation and Quality of Health Services Directorates. It comprises a network of areas within the Ministry of Health directly related to regulation, evaluation or coverage of health technologies in the public sector. Since the year 2012 UCEETS broadened its reach becoming part of the newly created Argentina Public Network of Health Technology Assessment (RedARETS), whose vision is the sustainable development of a public inter-jurisdictional cooperation system of HTA in Argentina, in order to generate and disseminate such assessments in the country, sharing public resources and providing HTA results to healthcare decision makers in an efficient manner. This network is now fully operational and has become a discussion forum for HTA public policy and methodology in Argentina.
To coordinate HTA initiatives within the National Ministry of Health and produce the most efficient, highest quality of scientific information on the effectiveness, costs, and the overall impact of health technologies, thereby acting as a facilitator for decision making of all citizens, managers and health care providers, reaffirming the leadership role of the Ministry in this matter.
How UCEETS works
HTA requests from decission makers and general public are derived by the executive coordination, after scoping process, to one of UCEETS members, who will be in charge of the execution of the HTA evaluation. These HTA products may be full reports, short or rapid response HTAs, economic evaluations or impact analysis, according to questions to be answered. This process has been standarized and comprises several quality related methodology filters in a stepway fashion. The HTA report goes then through a peer review process within UCEETS network. After that, the original question gets answered and the report is published in UCEETS data bank until update occurs.
UCEETS is also an active member of regional and international HTA networks such as Mercosur, RedETSA, INAHTA, HTAi and GIN.
Full reports are published on UCEETS website (https://sisa.msal.gov.ar/sisa/) and RedARETS network. Copies are sent to the authority or public who has requested the HTA report. Workshops around selected subject may be organized. Some results become supplies for clinical practice guideline recommendations.
Current projects (a selection):
- Cost-effectiveness of Bevacizumab for the treatment of metastasic colorectal cancer
- Cost-effectiveness studies on pneumococcal vaccines to support its incorporation into the national immunization program.
- HTA of multiple technologies on comparative effectiveness of sevelamer; cinecalcet; hectorol and paricalcitol for renal osteodistrophy in adult patients.
- Clinical Practice Guideline on Strategies for Tobacco Cessation.
- Clinical Practice Guideline on Food Disorders.
- Learning course on critical appraisal of clinical practice guidelines by distance learning.
- Workshop on critical appraisal of HTA reports and economic evaluations.
- Development of a standarized methodology for the inclussion of patients and public in the HTA process.
- Development of RedARETS Bulletin on HTA.
- A distance-learning course on HTA methods for different jurisdictions.
- To broaden RedARETS network and further integrate UCEETS members.
- To include patients and public in HTA process.
- To include ethics and equity as dimensions for the assessment of health technologies.
Description of population served: National, focused on National and Federal Ministries of Health
Population served (mil): 41
Current HTA budget (mil USD):
Permanent staff: 24
Ongoing TA projects: 12
Director: Guillermo Williams
Contact person: Dr. Verónica Sanguine
The National Coordination Unit of Health Technology Assessment and Implementation
Av. 9 de Julio 1925 – piso 10 oficina 1009
C1073ABA Buenos Aires Argentina